The Rivers State Governor, Rotimi Amaechi, has said all students of the Rivers State University of Science and Technology, RSUST, will pay the same amount of school fees.
Speaking at an interactive secession, on Monday at RSUST, the governor directed that henceforth, all students of the university would pay the same amount for tuition whether they were indigenes of Rivers State or not.
Mr. Amaechi directed school management to ensure the directive was adhered to.
“Anybody in the Rivers State University of Science and Technology is an indigene,” he said. “All of us are Nigerians.”
He also directed the Secretary to the State Government, George Feyii, to prepare a letter to the state university to that effect.
“The reason why I made that statement, and I am going to back it up with a letter, is that we are all Nigerians. And so from today, no more discrimination in school fees,” Mr. Amaechi said.
Mr. Amaechi called on the school authority to allow students register their courses and pay later for those whose fees were not readily available at the time of registration, in order not to deprive them of studying with their classmates.
“My personal view is, because of the current economic situation, any student who has money to pay (for school fees), let him pay,” he said. “The ones that don’t have money yet, let them register, and during exams, you collect your money.
“The reason is that 60 to 70 per cent of you (students) are from very poor backgrounds. My father was a retiree when I got into the university. I didn’t have money but school fees were very cheap.”
He also called on the school management to grant freedom to the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, to exercise their democratic rights in the university.
“Allow ASUU,” he said. “Let the lecturers form their ASUU. I will direct the Commissioner for Education to write to the university to allow the lecturers congregate and form their union. The law allows them to do so. That is democracy.”